FAQ

When do work camps take place?

Workcamps take place throughout the year. The main season is from April to September.

How long does a workcamp last?

Usually two weeks.

How long does a longer assignment last?

This can last from one month to one year. Depending on the project, the duration can also be determined individually. This means that for certain projects the duration can be chosen freely.

What are examples of activities and tasks in work camps?

  • Working in permaculture projects
  • Protect endangered animal species
  • Participation in peace projects (e.g. co-designing an anti-nuclear campaign)
  • Designing leisure activities for people with disabilities
  • Teaching children English or mathematics
  • Assistance with smaller music or art festivals
  • Clean polluted coastlines
  • Monument preservation
  • Collaboration in archaeological projects
  • You can find all projects on our project search

What does a workcamp enable you to do?

  • Contribute to making people, the environment and nature feel better.
  • Learning special working techniques and skills
  • Sensible, cost-effective and unconventional stays abroad
  • Meet people from all over the world
  • Experience foreign cultures
  • Deepen your knowledge of foreign languages
  • Extending social and personal competences
  • Reduce prejudices, promote tolerance
  • On request: Certificate Voluntary Work

What about the costs?

The registration fee for a work camp abroad is CHF 250. A longer stay abroad of 1 month or more costs CHF 350. Accommodation and meals are provided by the project partner.

Will I have to pay any additional costs?

The principle is that there should be no additional costs for the participants on site. However, not all organisations can comply with this principle. Especially in poorer countries, additional fees are sometimes charged for participation in a project. These “extra fees” are noted in the project description.

Why do I have to pay these placement fees for voluntary work?

Workcamp Switzerland is organised as an association and is committed to local charitable projects that depend on volunteer work. We are dependent on participation fees to organise and place volunteer assignments, as well as for the preparation and follow-up of volunteers and camp leaders. In contrast to tourism-oriented offers, we are not profit-oriented.

Who pays the travel costs?

The travel costs are paid by the volunteers. They are also responsible for organising the trip themselves.

Who will take care of the visa if necessary?

This is also the responsibility of the participants. More information on individual countries and regions can be found here. If you have any questions or difficulties, please feel free to contact us.

Who takes care of the necessary insurance coverage?

The participants themselves are responsible for this. In principle, we recommend accident and health insurance with cover for return transport.

What about health care?

The participants are responsible for making the necessary arrangements (vaccinations, etc.). You can find more information here.

What is the minimum age for participation?

The minimum age is 18 years. There are teenage camps for younger participants*(mostly 14 to 17 years). These have a special note. On our search engine you can search for projects for your age.

How can I register for a workcamp?

This is done via the online registration form. You will then receive an e-mail from us informing you about the placement process.

How far in advance should you register for a workcamp?

As a rule of thumb for countries in Europe, we recommend at least a month in advance, ideally two months. If you are a spontaneous person and can organize quickly, two weeks are enough. For countries in Asia, Africa and America, we recommend that you register three months before the start of the camp. However, in general it also depends on whether you need a visa for the country. Be sure to allow enough time to organize your trip and check the visa and vaccination requirements.

What happens if I am unable to participate after registering?

Please let us know as soon as possible.

Will the registration fee be refunded?

If you are unable to attend due to illness and can present a medical certificate, the placement fee will be refunded. The fee will not be refunded for personal reasons.

What happens if the workcamp is cancelled?

Then you will get your registration fee back or we will try to find another suitable workcamp in consultation with you.

What about the regulations for longer projects?

The regulations for participation in longer projects are the same as for a workcamp.

How many hours do you work on average?

The average working time is 5-6 hours a day from Monday to Friday.

What is the workcamp language?

The workcamp language is usually English. Otherwise, this is specifically noted in the project description. In France, Germany and Mexico there are also some workcamps where French, German or Spanish are spoken. In Mexico it is also possible to attend Spanish language courses in combination with work camps.

Can I swap the project for another one afterwards?

A rebooking is possible for an additional fee of CHF 50.

How is quality assurance guaranteed in the work camps?

Workcamp Switzerland is a member of the international umbrella organisation of the European Voluntary Service Organisation, or Alliance for short. In order to guarantee the quality of all volunteer projects, the members of the «Alliance Qualiy Charter» have an obligation. At the national level, Workcamp Switzerland is Intermundo-SQS certified. The IntermundoSQS certificate is based on around 50 quality standards. Compliance with the quality criteria is checked externally every 3 years.